Am I crazy or creative?
Everyone has thought of a great idea for a product/service, and you're probably reading this right now because you have something in your mind right now. Your "eureka" moments have probably happened in the most unlikely of places such as in the shower or while you're on the toilet (I won't judge). Most of my ideas ironically come from my tendency to be extremely lazy. Take my idea for an automatic apple peeler, this was born because I was too lazy to keep peeling apples myself. These little fantasies occur often but the hardest part is knowing whether this idea is worth pursing and turning into a business. Apart from asking your family and friends who will either tell you you're crazy for the sake of it because they want you to go to university and become an account/doctor/lawyer (cue various professional occupations) or support you no matter how stupid you are, where else do you go to confirm of your idea really is marketable - especially if your target market are aliens from mars that enjoy toffee? Never fear! You can now validate your idea for under $100 and with very little technical skills required.
Your prayers have been answered
The answer is Facebook - yes the thing that wastes your day from doing productive things is also the answer to your wildest dreams. For under $100, I've been able to work out whether my idea has been valuable, and once I've established that - what angle to best market it from.
The beauty of marketing on Facebook is that you are able to target the exact people you feel will buy your product. After that you can see from their behaviour whether they would be interested in it. The best thing about behavioural validation is that there is no bias from people wanting to say yes to you because they are polite, you've essentially cut through the crap and have a chance at getting your real answer.
So, how the freak do I do that?
So what do you do? You simple set up a Facebook page with details of your business, or a simple one page website and run your Facebook ads with a message that sells your product. You don't actually NEED a product you just sell your IDEA, and then you target this message to green aliens in mars that like toffee. After that, you just sit back and wait, I like to play computer games while I do this :). After a few days of waiting you can start to see which messages get the most clicks if you get clicks at all. If no one clicks - I think you're idea will take a but more effort to sell. If you get tonnes of clicks then you are onto a winner, and you may have quite a few people expecting to use your product already. The Facebook ad reports given you a very good idea on the clicks and actions. If you get a click through rate of 0.02% it's generally pretty promising. Any less and you may need to think of the way you are wording it and refine your message again. This may be daunting to you, but if you do a little search there are so many resources that teach you how to create a Facebook page and create your own ads.
I'd love to hear your crazy business ideas that you have had in the comments section below: